One of many abandoned houses in the village of Iitate. Most houses and shops have been abandoned by their owners following the tsunami and subsequent accident at the Fukushima nuclear power plant nearby. The government advised all residents to leave the village since it lies on the edge, yet outside, the 20 km evacuation zone that has been declared around the stricken power plant.
On 11 March 2011 a magnitude 9 earthquake struck 130 km off the coast of Northern Japan causing a massive Tsunami that swept across the coast of Northern Honshu. The earthquake and tsunami caused extensive damage and loss of life. It also caused an accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant which led to the plant being shut down and a 20 km evacuation zone around the plant being declared by the government. Levels of radiation near the evacuation zone remain high.